New to Therapy? Here’s What to Expect

New to Therapy? Here’s What to Expect

By Tad Lusk, LPC

Reaching out for help is not always easy. In fact, it’s most often hard.
It takes courage, determination, fortitude and openness. It can be difficult to summon those if you’re going through a rough patch in life.

In this blog, I’m going to lay out clearly what you can expect at Denver Men’s Therapy—on your first visit, and any future appointments (and do some myth-busting along the way).

Ready? Let’s get to it.

What is therapy all about?

In a nutshell, therapy is working with a trusted confidant and adviser (i.e. your therapist) to become a better version of yourself. How does that happen? Read on.

How Do I find the right therapist?

Finding the right fit therapist is one of the most important aspects of successful therapy. The therapeutic relationship between the client must feel safe and trusting. Check out our Therapist Match to match with a Denver Men’s Therapist. 

. What does the process involve? What’s a typical appointment like?

Typical therapy appointments are very much like having a conversation. The difference is, your therapist will often ask questions or suggest things to think about that will help you gain more self-awareness and insight. With that, you can change habits that aren’t working for you any more, and start doing things that will get you feeling good. Your therapist might suggest techniques you can try during the week.

A couple great things about these conversations are:

  • It’s totally confidential. Nothing leaves the room, so what you discuss will be kept private, and therefore you can feel more comfortable discussing things that might otherwise feel too private.
  • It’s nonjudgmental. Your therapist is one of the few (if only) people in your life who is objective, and will not judge you for anything. In fact, it’s a very important code of conduct for therapists to maintain a balanced, open perspective (and trust me, there’s pretty much nothing we haven’t heard, so you don’t need to feel embarrassed or worried about what we’ll think).

How Long Will it Take?

Therapy always has an end in sight. We want to help you get to where you’re doing so well on your own that don’t need therapy anymore. (Similar to if you had to go to physical therapy to rehab an injury: after enough visits, you’d eventually get strong & mobile enough to be done with treatment go enjoy your life).

With that said, the average number of sessions varies depending on the person, symptoms and personal goals. Some people come for just two or three sessions and feel like they got everything they needed. Other people will come for longer if they have more to work through.

After meeting for the first time, your therapist can give you a much better estimate of how many sessions would be best depending on your individual goals.

How Often Should I Go?

We usually recommend an appointment once a week. (Each appointment is an hour). Weekly therapy has been shown to be the most effective at helping people make more rapid progress, see quicker results, and get done sooner.

Is Therapy Going to Change My Personality?

No—contrary to what you may have seen on TV or movies, we are not hypnotists or magicians who are going to try to make you into someone else. We’re people just like you, who’ve personally worked through a lot of the issues our clients deal with, and have gained years of experience and training to give you good information and advice. We’re here to help you become more yourself – the most healthy, happy, confident version of you possible.

What Happens at the First Visit?

You and your therapist will sit down for about an hour to get to know each other and get an overview of why you’re seeking help. Your therapist will likely ask you some follow-up questions about your personal history to help make sure the direction of therapy will be tailored to your needs. You are also welcome and encouraged to ask any questions might have

By the end of your first visit, you’ll identify goals to work on, get some action steps to try when you leave and schedule your next session.

Now, let’s clarify what therapy is, and is not.

Therapy IS:

  • Goal-oriented
  • Action-oriented
  • Empowering

Therapy is NOT:

  • An open-ended conversation with no end in sight
  • A “mysterious” process – your therapist will always be open and honest with you
  • Anything to be embarrassed or ashamed of.

That last one is super important to remember. Therapy is nothing to feel guilty or embarrassed about.

As men, we’ve been conditioned by society, our dads, our coaches etc. be tough and stoic, and “have it all together.”

In reality, all people need help sometimes. By reaching out for help, you’re actually showing way more strength and courage than people who just try to go it alone, suffering in silence.

Seriously, you can be really proud for going to therapy. You’ll thank yourself later too, when you feel happier, healthier, more confident, and are enjoying your life and relationships fully.

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